After you leave, by Cynthia Damon

I used to wonder how the dog knew when you were about to
wander in the door home from work.

He, the dog, like I,
feels the barometric pressure dip
the moment you exit each morning.

He has taught me that the scent of you lingers—
sweet mint on your breath,
dark coffee in your mug,
lather from the loofah.

Your fading fragrance is the
tick of an olfactory clock chiming the time
that you’re expected home

that you’re expected

that you were


Published 12th of February 2024


About Cynthia Damon

Although Cynthia Damon grew up in New Jersey, she has lived in Los Angeles long enough to know that she should avoid all freeways. Her wife, son, and Labrador are her inspirations and most candid editors. Some of her writing has appeared in HerStry, Adelaide Literary Magazine, Western New York Family Magazine, Pasadena Star News, and has been long-listed for The Letter Review Prize.